Five short­listed in the race to build HS2 trains

Birmingham Post - - NEWS - Tam­lyn Jones

FIVE man­u­fac­tur­ers have been short­listed in a £2.75 bil­lion race to build the trains which will run on the new high-speed rail line be­tween Birm­ing­ham and Lon­don.

The quin­tet will now go through to the fi­nal stage of ten­der­ing for the mega-con­tract to build more than 50 trains ready for use on HS2 when it opens in 2026.

The short­listed bid­ders are Al­stom, Bom­bardier, Hi­tachi Rail Europe, Pa­tentes Talgo and Siemens and the con­tract will cover the de­sign, build and main­te­nance of at least 54 trains ca­pa­ble of op­er­at­ing at speeds of up to 225 mph. The suc­cess­ful bid­der will main­tain the fleet from a ded­i­cated rolling stock de­pot planned for Wash­wood Heath, in Birm­ing­ham, where there will also be a HS2 Net­work Con­trol Cen­tre.

The first phase of HS2 is due to run be­tween cen­tral Lon­don and Soli­hull and Birm­ing­ham from 2026, with later phases run­ning to the North West, East Mid­lands and York­shire by 2033. The ten­der process will launch next spring with the con­tract awarded in 2019 and the first trains will be­gin to roll off the pro­duc­tion line in the early 2020s.

HS2 Min­is­ter Paul May­nard said: “Thou­sands of skilled Bri­tish jobs and ap­pren­tice­ships will be cre­ated by HS2 which gets a step closer as we re­veal the com­pa­nies short­listed to build the high-speed trains.

“HS2 will see some of the world’s fastest trains con­nect­ing our great cities across the north and Mid­lands, cre­at­ing an econ­omy that works for ev­ery­one.

“But an­nounce­ments like this show how the ben­e­fits of HS2 will res­onate far be­yond the open­ing of the new rail­way. HS2’s legacy of jobs and skills ed.”

Chris Rayner, HS2’s man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of rail­way op­er­a­tions, added: “It’s great to see such a strong line up of ex­pe­ri­enced high-tech man­u­fac­tur­ing and de­sign tal­ent.

“To­gether with the suc­cess­ful bid­der, HS2 will de­liver some of the world’s most ad­vanced rolling stock, en­gi­neered to pro­vide seam­less, ac­ces­si­ble, fast and re­li­able jour­neys.” is al­ready be­ing creat-

> HS2 Min­is­ter Paul May­nard

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